When I procrastinate–as I am currently doing by updating my blog–it’s a letdown.
I get into this anxiety-inducing coma of thoughts… my fearful thoughts envelop me, cause me to come dangerously close to nervous breakdown territory, and then create enough freaked out momentum to propel me through my procrastination haze with great torrents of gusto and enthusiasm. This period of time is usually birthed out of great encouragement from my friends, husband, and to-do-list.. all cheering me “ONWARD! You can do this! Do it… Don’t stop now.. you’re so close!” Through their prodding and enticing words, I look at my tasks ahead and decide that the night before is just as good a time as any to begin.
(Brief interlude: Why do I do this to myself, you may ask? Well–friend, the fact is this… it does produce results. Procrastination works for both my husband and I.. occasionally helping, with God’s grace, to make exceptional pieces of work that may not have been created otherwise–there is so much tension, so much last minute energy, that we work very hard in a short amount of time. If we planned things out to a T, and did things before hand, it just wouldn’t be so exciting. I think that’s the only good explanation for why we seem to habitually fall into this mode of operation. I’m not condoning it.. just saying that it is one way to get things accomplished. However, we go through great amounts of unnecessary stress, frustration, and sometimes get ourselves in a bind because of it. )
So at this stage of the game, when I’m finally pushed into overdrive, I am in a frenzy. My mind goes through different periods of a totally on guard, awake, hyper-drive mode… then switches to a black out mode where I seem to misplace everything, turn the wrong burner on while cooking… and talk to my husband in half-sentences that he must work to decipher. Most likely because I am thinking of all the crap I haven’t done, that I must do, and don’t have my mind on the things that I am currently trying to do. Not a delightful place to be.
As the semester closes, I am so ready to be done I can taste it. I have one final tomorrow (a devilishly difficult one.. seems as though our prof has given us a curve ball exam, and I hardly recognize the study guide as material we learned!) and a presentation of my portfolio (which I should take pride in, as its a representation of my whole career as an undergrad) and that’s IT!
The story with my portfolio is this: It includes so many components of my life, my coursework, my passions, that it is something I should be able to love–easily. The upside: I began it about a month ago, to get ahead of the curve. The downside: I am just now sitting down to complete it (before tomorrow). Oopsies. Well, I have all of this built up fear, all of this anxiety about not having finished it yet… and I sit down to make myself do it.
I dawdle a bit. Then I open up the files to work on them, get on the livetext website I am using to present it.. and what do I realize? Goodness, the end is not nearly so far as I had imagined. My project has fewer dilemmas to work out, less problematic aspects, and more fun to it than I realized! This happens often with the things in life I MUST to do. As I procrastinate… my fear of working on a project increases. It expands and warps until suddenly, my once small and doable task has turned into a terrible creature that I cannot recognize.
I do this to myself. And, I can say, it has gotten better. The more often I’ve done it, the more I can see this pattern of imagining things as far worse than they truly are… and realizing I’ve done that. Realizing I’ve created a monster that doesn’t exist. I have freaked myself out and procrastinated, when it’s really not all that bad.
So… this putting things off habit–which I don’t do all the time, but usually do when I feel like I can’t complete something properly, can be a beautiful letdown. Yes, indeed, there is hope for us all. A wonderful disappointment. Because though I have done it again, I have come a little bit closer to working with myself and understanding myself.
Aren’t we amusing creatures?
Okey dokey smokey. I must get down to business.
Thanks for letting me procrastinate just a bit more.